You’ve spent a countless number of hours and energy working to find that perfect candidate to join your team. You interview them. You hire them. You train them. Then, after all of that, it turns out your new hire is a dud. What do you do when a new hire isn’t what you thought they would be? Here’s your plan of action:
Address the situation with a quick response. If you see that your new hire is displaying some concerning behaviors, address it immediately. Don’t sit back and simply hope that they improve. If issues aren’t addressed or taken to HR as they occur, you may not have any documented evidence to back your claims as things escalate later down the road. Remember, you’re a leader. Act in the best interest of your team. If your team sees you giving slack to the new hire, they may lose respect for you and even worse, adopt the bad behaviors of their newest team mate.
Actively reflect on how the situation came about. Ask yourself what went wrong during the hiring process. How could this have been avoided? What measures should have been taken to provide a more thorough assessment of the candidate’s aptitude? Hiring managers are accountable for these situations, so reflection is necessary in order to learn and improve. The fact is that if you hired an underperformer, then you underperformed while hiring them. Turn this into a learning experience for everyone, including yourself.
Make a plan to prevent future bad-hire situations. Upon reflecting, you will likely find that your interview tactics need improvement in order to weed out those dud candidates who have shown concerning behavior in the past. Make a point to employ the use of secondary references during future interviews, in which you speak with the reference provided, then ask that person if there’s another contact. Ask behavioral-based questions and get to the heart of a potential hire. Don’t simply ask for their strengths and weaknesses; dig deep.